1. What specific issues will be addressed by the new building project?
The safety of our students is our number one priority at MGAES. The building plan provides for a single entry point that is monitored by office staff. In addition, a fence with a locked gate will be added from the corner of the 7th/8th grade wing across the lawn in front of the gymnasium, as well as a fence at the bottom of Center Point. These fences will prevent access to the playground and soccer field.
The current music space is the old gymnasium and not only are the acoustics poor, the layout does not allow for students to sit during practice, or provide any dedicated space for music or instruments. The building plan transforms most of the old gymnasium into a dedicated music department with built-in risers, dedicated space for band and handbells, and adequate storage for instruments and music.
Kindergarten was housed in Meadow Glade SDA Church this year due to lack of classroom space, and there is a large number of kids currently in 3rd grade who will every other year require four classrooms. Over the past nine years, we have had consecutive growth. The building plan adds two classrooms, one at the end of the old gymnasium space, adjacent to the music department, and one comprised of the current practice room and old kitchen, storage room, and the west entrance.
Resource Learning, KidZone, and the Library
The old library space (the space that was Mrs. Rich’s classroom last year) will be remodeled to accommodate a Resource Learning classroom, with two-thirds of the space being used for a library during the school day and KidZone before and after school. Doors to the outside will allow for easy use of the covered play area and playground for KidZone.
(I didn’t include both possibilities here if we’re aiming for the better outcome that allows for a library AND resource learning area. Since we’re going ahead with this first project area this summer, I think we should focus on that.)
The current bathrooms are small and out of code. The new bathrooms increase capacity with up-to-date bathrooms and comply with new requirements that all toilet areas have full-height stalls.
With the move to a single-entry point, the administrative space will be redesigned to take advantage of the additional square footage. The plan provides for six offices, including a smaller principal’s office, and room for seating area around the reception desk. In addition, the reception works pace provides enough room for two people and triples the work surface, and expands the faculty meeting room to hold all staff.
2. How much money needs to be raised to fund the project?
The total cost is $2.1 million. We currently have $800,000 pledged. We are applying for a grant, and if necessary, a loan from the conference. That’s where you come in. Donate here. (link to donation form)
3. Why can’t MGAES add a cafeteria?
Our original plan, developed many years ago, included a cafeteria, but since then our enrollment has increased to over 300 students and we need the space for a larger music department and classrooms. We cannot expand our physical footprint or go up. (See below.)
4. Why can’t MGAES expand its physical footprint?
The south end of the 3rd/4th grade wing is limited by fire truck access. The east end is limited by access to the gymnasium, although it is possible we could build another building on the other side of the sidewalk, but the cost per square footage is prohibitive.
We are avoiding changing the physical footprint because it would require an environmental impact study, a traffic study, and road improvements, as well as increased permit costs.
5. Why can’t MGAES expand up to a two-story building?
The structure is not built for two stories; we would have to tear down existing walls and rebuild, which is cost prohibitive.
6. Can we build a bridge or a tunnel across the road to the cafeteria?
The costs are prohibitive for both.